Indian women take their revenge

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The Independent Online

As stories go, it's as good as any, and it gives at least some women of India – many of whom endure lives of hard work and very often abuse – the chance to get their own back.

Just days before the spring festival of Holi, an event celebrated across the country with the raucous throwing of water and multi-coloured dyes, the residents of Barsana, a small town around 60 miles south of Delhi, indulge in their own unique version of the festival.

Barsana is known as the home village of Radha, the favourite cowgirl or "gopi" of Lord Krishna, who teased the young woman and her friends.

Every year, the men from Nandgaon, the nearby village that was home to Lord Krishna, visit Barsana and endure the wrath of its women, who grab sticks and branches and knotted saris to ritually attack the menfolk. Knowing what is in store for them, the men prepare by wearing padding or else holding shields. Some are even dragged away by the women, dressed in women's clothes and made to dance.